Court Reporter Certification
The court reporting profession plays an important role in the judicial system, as well as society in general. It is important to create and maintain an accurate and detailed record of legal proceedings. The importance of having a record makes it necessary to require certification to ensure the established standards can be met.
Court reporter certification is handled at the state level across the country and many jurisdictions require certification at a certain level to be considered for employment. There are many different kinds of court reporter certification available. Some of them are more specialized and some indicate a higher level of achievement.
You can see that there are many different kinds of certifications available. You should start with the beginning and then work toward adding additional certifications to your resume. Some certifications show a higher level of proficiency and other certifications are designed to show that you are highly proficient in specialized areas within the court-reporting field.
Types of Court Reporter Certification
Many types of certification can be obtained through the National Court Reporters Association (NCRA). This is a nationally recognized entity that can provide exams for different types of certification.
The basic level of court reporter certification is Registered Professional Reporter (RPR). It includes skills tests as well as a written test and everything must be passed at the same time. Continuing education is a requirement in order to keep your certification up to date. The minimum requirements are 200 wpm for jury charge and 225 wpm for testimony.
The Certified Real-time Reporter (CRR) was developed in 1996 as the industry began to use more real-time reporting methods and technologies. The required dictation speed is 180 wpm. You must already hold the CRR certification and be complying with the continuing education requirements in order to be eligible for this certification. Many federal and sate court systems provide increased salaries for people who have Certified Real-time Reporter certification.
The Certified Court Reporter (CCR) certification is usually a state level certification that is required in lieu of recognizing some of the national certifications available.
Certification is offered from NVRA for a (CVR) Certified Verbatim Reporter level of certification. There is a four-part exam that includes both skills tests and a written test. Continuing education is also required to maintain this certification. A court reporter may gain additional, more advanced certifications such as Real-time Verbatim Reporter (RVR).
National Court Reporters Association Certification
The National Court Reporters Association’s mission is to promote quality education, professionalism, & excellence in court reporting. They offer programs for mentoring of new reporters, court reporting continuing education, certification, and represent the industry as a whole.
National Court Reporters Association
8224 Old Courthouse Road
Vienna, Virginia 22182-3808
NCRA Contact Numbers
Toll Free: 800/272-6272 (NCRA)
Local: 703/556-6272 (NCRA)
Education Before Certification
If you are planning for a career in the court reporting profession, most people start by obtaining a court reporting degree. You can earn your degree from either from an online court reporting schools, or see if your city or state has campus court reporting schools. That is where you will have the opportunity to become educated about your chosen profession and you will have the chance to practice and hone your skills. It will also give you the opportunity to learn about the specific options available in the field so that you will know which type of certification you need to obtain.
It will be to your benefit to achieve additional certifications as you continue to work in your field. Additional certifications will make you more marketable, help to advance your career more quickly and will sometimes increase your pay.